Spate of suspicious fires

PUBLISHED: 07:24 12 April 2007 | UPDATED: 10:19 31 May 2010

SAFFRON Walden s fire chief Paul Curtis has voiced his concerns following a spate of suspicious fires in the town. A caravan was set alight in a lay-by near Ridgeons Ltd in Ashdon Road, Saffron Walden, on Sunday afternoon and two crews had to extinguish i

SAFFRON Walden's fire chief Paul Curtis has voiced his concerns following a spate of suspicious fires in the town.

A caravan was set alight in a lay-by near Ridgeons Ltd in Ashdon Road, Saffron Walden, on Sunday afternoon and two crews had to extinguish it.

Mr Curtis said: "On Sunday a number of 999 calls were received from concerned members of the public about black smoke coming from the vicinity of Ridgeons in Ashdon Road.

"Crews quickly located the source, finding a caravan well ablaze in a lay-by. It's believed the caravan was brought to the site and deliberately ignited by person or persons unknown.

"This is the latest in a worrying trend of malicious fires in and around the town of late, although at this stage this particular incident is not being linked to the recent skip and bin fires we have seen."

On March 13, a skip was set on fire on a driveway in Peaslands Road at about 12.30am, and some bins were set alight in Harris Yard at 12.45am.

"We think these were arson attacks and are linked as the locations are only half a mile apart and it's unusual for us to get two fires of this nature," added Mr Curtis.

One crew from Saffron Walden assisted their colleagues in Newport to damp down eight bales of straw, which were well alight behind the train station in Debden Road as they left the scene of the caravan fire.

Firefighters were also called to Cambridge Road, between Littlebury and Great Chesterford, the same day where a bonfire was out of control.

Mr Curtis said: "Fire prevention advice was offered and the fire was quickly bought under control.

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